Extreme Connectivity for Defence

| Industrial Sector News

Connector systems for military vehicles combine power and data transmission in a single modular loom

Military vehicle connectors must maintain reliable functionality under extreme operating and environmental conditions

Military vehicles face a variety of challenges in the field, with missions characterized by demanding environmental conditions as well as extreme weather. Impassable terrain, different soil conditions, but also heat, cold, precipitation and dust must not impair performance. In addition, it must be possible for military units to network with each other. This requires the transmission of even higher data rates. Depending on the application and transmission distances, the use of optical fibres is unavoidable.

Complex connectors

The requirements for the transmission of current, high voltage, data technology or fibre optics are so different that they usually cannot be integrated into one connector. Therefore, a multi-product approach is usually preferred.

At ODU, standard cable assemblies are offered for various data technology protocols: USB, HDMI, Displayport or coax connectors. Often, the connected subsystem is crucial. For this reason, for example when a reconnaissance device or other optotronics system requires high-frequency connectors that ensure connection to printed circuit boards. On the other hand, a HUB in the vehicle ensures data exchange via an Ethernet hub.

ODU-MAC modular connector

For when an application has a requirement for a single connector on the harness, there is the ODU-MAC series of modular connectors, in which various modules from power transmission to data technology can be used, all of which are integrated into one interface. In this particular case, the modular connector transmits both the supply voltages for a central electronic unit and the switching and control signals for the entire tower system. These are appropriate for, for example, in Main Battle tank Systems (MBT) for the defence industry.

Such connectors for military and security technology need to be robust, resistant and optimised for demanding applications. They need to ensure a fast and trouble-free flow of information thanks to a combination of flexible connections, compact dimensions and high speeds. The extreme resilience and transmission reliability of the ODU connector is guaranteed even under the most technically demanding environmental conditions.

Rugged Industrial Connectors

For rugged industrial applications and harsh environments, the M12 cable and connector product from Stewart Connector has the design and build required to meet tough environmental conditions.

All of the cables and connectors in the M12 product line are designed for use in rugged spaces and are IP67 rated or above for water resistance and dust protection. Supporting Ethernet data transfer in aerospace, industrial automation, manufacturing and robotics, the expansion of the M12 product range could help those users who require readily built-up parts with a variety of length and mount features in order to quickly deploy them in end-use settings without on-site customisation.

The products in the range include the A-Code series, with both male and female panel mount receptacles and multiple field terminated options, the latest D-Code series, featuring panel mount female solder cup, board mount female connector and vertical male connector with overmolded cable (1.0m and 2.0m) and the new K-Code series, including female connector end with 3-foot over moulded cable, panel mount male connector and plastic cap.

Also, the M12 X-Code series is available in panel mount female connector form with male-to-male coiled Ethernet cord or male-to-RJ45 plug coiled Ethernet cord with panel mount plastic cap.

The cable and connector range is suitable for harsh industrial applications or for test systems that are used within environmental chambers or other similar applications.

Jonathan Newell
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